It goes without saying that it's dangerous for a lamb to spend time in the den of wolves, but when that lamb lingers longer than is necessary, the result is guaranteed. Alpha Dog, the 2006 Sundance Closing Night film whose resemblance to a real-life case engendered a lawsuit, is about such a situation. It illustrates that not all master criminals are masterminds and that not all "nerds gone wild" stories have happy endings. Director Nick Cassavetes should be commended for the unflinching manner in which he tells the story - it packs a punch, although it lingers too long to be truly unsettling. There's an art to figuring out when to end a movie and, at least on this occasion, it eludes the filmmakers.
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